iPhone Microphone Not Working? Here’s How to Fix & Troubleshoot iPhone Microphone Issues

Feb 5, 2021 - 1 Comment

iPhone Microphone Not Working? Here's How to Fix & Troubleshoot

Is the microphone on your iPhone not working as intended? Or, does your voice sound muffled during voice calls and video calls? There are several factors that could hamper the performance of your iPhone’s microphone, so let’s take look at how to resolve what can be a frustrating issue.

Although microphone problems are often hardware-related, software issues and changes to the settings on your iPhone can also stop it from working like it normally does. Sometimes, you may have trouble getting your microphone to work with a specific app. Or in some other situations, it could also be due to the simple fact that your iPhone is connected to a nearby Bluetooth device, or even plugged into a set of hardware headphones. Regardless, this is pretty easy to diagnose and resolve in most cases, so there’s nothing to worry about.

If you’re one of those unlucky iOS users who’re facing issues with the built-in microphone, don’t fret. In this article, we’ll be walking you through steps to troubleshoot and fix possible microphone-related problems on your iPhone, but the same tips would apply to iPad too.

How to Fix & Troubleshoot Microphone on iPhone

Regardless of what iPhone model you currently own, you can follow these basic troubleshooting methods when the integrated stereo microphone on your device stops working for some reason.

1. Clean Your Microphone

The first basic thing you need to do when your microphone stops working properly is to check the microphone grill at the bottom of your iPhone. See if there’s any sort of dust accumulation and clean the debris with a toothbrush or cotton swab if necessary.

If your iPhone got wet in the rain recently, or if you accidentally dropped it in the sink, place your iPhone with the speaker side facing down to drain excess water and then let it dry for a bit.

2. Disconnect All Bluetooth Devices

Now that you have a feeling it’s not a hardware-related issue, you’ll need to make sure that you’re not connected to any of the nearby Bluetooth devices. This is because connections to nearby Bluetooth speakers, headphones, and other devices can disable the built-in microphone on your iPhone and use the microphone on the Bluetooth peripheral instead. To do this, head over to the iOS Control Center and tap on the Bluetooth toggle once, if it’s enabled. This will disconnect you from all Bluetooth devices for 24 hours.

iPhone Microphone Not Working? Here's How to Fix & Troubleshoot

3. Disable Phone Noise Cancellation

This is a feature that’s enabled by default on all iPhones. It intends to reduce ambient noise on phone calls when you’re holding the receiver to your ear. Try disabling this feature and see if it resolves your microphone issue for now. To do this, head over to Settings -> General -> Accessibility -> Audio/Visual.

iPhone Microphone Not Working? Here's How to Fix & Troubleshoot

4. Enable Microphone for Specific Apps

If you’re only having microphone issues with a certain app, chances are, the app lacks permissions to access your microphone. This can be quickly resolved by going to Settings -> Privacy -> Microphone. Just use the toggle to give microphone permissions for the app that you’re trying to use.

iPhone Microphone Not Working? Here's How to Fix & Troubleshoot

If you have previously blocked microphone access for websites or for specific apps, this may be the problem.

5. Disconnect All Hardware from iPhone

If you have a physical set of headphones or speakers plugged into the iPhone (or iPad), try disconnecting those. Some iPhone headphones, like the earbuds, have built-in microphones, which are very convenient to use, but occasionally that headphone-set microphone can become damaged or dirty itself, and make the microphone not pickup audio, or sound muffled. This is an easy thing to check, so just unplug headphones if they’re plugged in and try again.

6. Reset All Settings

Consider this to be your last resort, because it’s a nuisance. Try resetting your iPhone to its factory default settings and see if that resolves your microphone issues. To do this, head over to Settings -> General -> Reset and tap on “Reset All Settings”. Although this doesn’t wipe all the data or apps installed on your iPhone, it will remove all your saved Wi-Fi passwords.

iPhone Microphone Not Working? Here's How to Fix & Troubleshoot

By now, you should’ve resolved the issues you were facing with the built-in microphone on your iPhone.

6: Force Reboot

If none of the above steps worked in your instance, you can try restarting or force restarting your iPhone and see if that fixes the issue. Most minor software-related bugs and glitches can be resolved by restarting your device. Keep in mind that a force reboot is different from a regular restart and requires a combination of key presses.

For iPhones with home buttons, you can force reboot by simply hold the power button and home button simultaneously until you see the Apple logo on the screen. For iPhones with Face ID, you can press the volume up button first, followed by the volume down button, and then hold the side/power button until you see the Apple logo.

Still can’t get your iPhone’s microphone to work? Well, at this point it’s time to contact Apple Support or figure out how to talk to a live agent at Apple for further assistance and try to resolve the problem at the earliest.

We really hope you managed to get your iPhone’s microphone working properly again. Which of the troubleshooting methods we discussed here worked for you? If not, did you get in touch with Apple Support? Do share your personal experience in the comments section down below.

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Posted by: Hamlin Rozario in iPhone, Tips & Tricks, Troubleshooting

One Comment

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  1. mark says:

    There are 4 micrphones. An Apple store can test to see if all are working if a problem is suspected, like poor voice quality.

    https://apple.stackexchange.com/questions/251930/wheres-iphone-7-microphone-located

    excerpt:
    All 4 microphones are used for active noise cancellation (reducing ambient sounds) and beamforming (detecting the location of the sound source), with one being picked as the most appropriate for recording (depending on closeness to the sound source, and on clarity). For instance, while shooting video, the rear microphone would usually be picked. Since iOS 10, you can record videos in stereo, so two microphones are picked in those cases.

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